# Statistics - Some Fundamental Concepts, Collecting Data, Graphical Representation, Distribution Curves, Other Kinds Of Frequency Distributions - Descriptive statistics

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study numerical table

Statistics is that branch of **mathematics** devoted to the collection, compilation, display, and interpretation of numerical data. In general, the **field** can be divided into two major subgroups, *descriptive statistics* and *inferential statistics*. The former subject deals primarily with the accumulation and presentation of numerical data, while the latter focuses on predictions that can be made based on those data.

Perhaps the simplest way to report the results of the study described above is to make a table. The advantage of constructing a table of data is that a reader can get a general idea about the findings of the study in a brief glance.

## Additional Topics

Two fundamental concepts used in statistical analysis are population and sample. The term population refers to a complete set of individuals, objects, or events that belong to some category. For example, all of the players who are employed by Major League Baseball teams make up the population of professional major league baseball players. The term sample refers to some subset of a population that …

The table shown above is one way of representing the frequency distribution of a sample or population. A frequency distribution is any method for summarizing data that shows the number of individuals or individual cases present in each given interval of measurement. In the table above, there are 5,382,025 female African-Americans in the age group 0-19; 2,982,305 in the age group 20-29; 2,587,550 i…

Finally, think of a histogram in which the vertical bars are very narrow...and then very, very narrow. As one connects the midpoints of these bars, the frequency polygon begins to look like a smooth curve, perhaps like a high, smoothly shaped hill. A curve of this kind is known as a distribution curve. Probably the most familiar kind of distribution curve is one with a peak in the middle of the gr…

Bar graphs look very much like histograms except that gaps are left between adjacent bars. This difference is based on the fact that bar graphs are usually used to represent discrete data and the space between bars is a reminder of the discrete character of the data represented. Line graphs can also be used to represent continuous data. If one were to record the temperature once an hour all day lo…

Both statisticians and non-statisticians talk about "averages" all the time. But the term average can have a number of different meanings. In the field of statistics, therefore, workers prefer to use the term "measure of central tendency" for the concept of an "average." One way to understand how various measures of central tendency (different kinds of &#x…

Suppose that a teacher gave the same test to two different classes and obtained the following results: Class 1: 80%, 80%, 80%, 80%, 80% Class 2: 60%, 70%, 80%, 90%, 100% If you calculate the mean for both sets of scores, you get the same answer: 80%. But the collection of scores from which this mean was obtained was very different in the two cases. The way that statisticians have of distinguishing…

Expressing a collection of data in some useful form, as described above, is often only the first step in a statistician's work. The next step will be to decide what conclusions, predictions, and other statements, if any, can be made based on those data. A number of sophisticated mathematical techniques have now been developed to make these judgments. An important fundamental concept used in…

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## User Comments

about 8 years ago

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